Monday, September 17, 2012

GUTGAA Pitch Contest #25: A QUESTION OF FAITH

A QUESTION OF FAITH
YA Paranormal
87,000

Query:

Fifteen-year-old Crystal Miller isn’t a Bible thumper, but how can she not believe in God when He answers nearly all of her prayers? Learning her birthmother sought the help of witches to conceive her shakes her previously unwavering faith. Since curiosity isn't a sin, she tracks down the witches and learns she's the incarnation of magic. Supposedly, that makes her the only person whose magical potential is limitless.

Crystal can’t believe her birthmother fell for such nonsense and vows to forget about magic, but when her boyfriend’s mom is seriously injured, she’s tempted to do more than just pray. Surely God won’t mind if she’s using magic to help people. After her boyfriend's mother miraculously recovers, Crystal doesn't know who saved her. Despite worrying her magic will damn her to Hell or, worse, that she doesn’t even have a soul to condemn, she sets out to master her power. Unfortunately, flying and playing with fireballs attracts dangerous attention. When a witch hunter captures her boyfriend and shamans snatch her aunt in an effort to control her, Crystal can no longer ignore who she really is. But she’s still new to magic and if she can't figure out what she's capable of, forget about saving those she loves--she just might start the apocalypse.

First 150 Words:

The attic door was always secured and padlocked, but now the stairs hang down into the hallway like a lolling tongue from a particularly dark and dusty mouth.

Something heavy thuds against the floor above my head, and I jump. What on earth is Mom doing up there?

Eager to finally learn what secrets the attic contains, I ascend three steps when a trash bag plows into me. Thankfully, the bulky bag is rather light.

"Crystal! What are you doing here?" Mom stands at the top of the stairs, her arms crossed, another bag dangling from her right hand, an annoyed—or is it worried?—expression on her face.

Surprised by Mom's sharp tone, I pick up the bag and descend the steps. "I wanted to see—"

Mom hurries down the stairs. "Can you take these bags down to the living room for me?" Her smile looks forced.

"But..."

4 comments:

  1. This sounds great! I like the juxtaposition of faith and magic--obviously your MC will have a lot to sort out. Nice job!

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  2. The first line of the query is winner hook and the dilemma of the MC is a tough one.

    The first 150 is interesting too and the attic holds a lot of promise!

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  3. PITCH: The concept and the questions it raises are absolutely fascinating. I haven’t seen too many witch books that are brave enough to explore religion. The pitch is also well-written and gives a good sense of what’s at stake for the protagonist, although there might be too much time spent on her internal conflict in the second paragraph.
    FIRST 150: This is grabby without being in-your-face. Questions raised but we’re still in the setting alongside the main character…it’s solid. Very cool image of the stairs looking like a lolling tongue. All the same, I need something more - maybe more voice? More tension here? I wish I could be more specific, but all I can say is you're almost there.

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